Ovila Abbey Dubbel | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Ovila Abbey DubbelOvila Abbey Dubbel

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Thorpe429 on 03-12-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
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Reviews: 454 | Ratings: 1,035
Photo of csiewert
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This been poured in a chalice glass with litle foam but it does retain well. The aroma is strong with caramel and fusel. The taste starts malty sweet, with some hints of cherry. The mouthfeel is nice, but you get left with a strong alcohol harshness. Overall just another mass produced attempt..

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Photo of fragilehearted
3.14/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml into Chimay chalice.

A - Dark reddish brown. Nice thick head that goes down quickly, but not TOO quickly.

S - kind of boring compared to other dubbels. Candied dark fruits, clove, caramel, bready. But it's pretty subdued for a dubbel. I love a good aroma, so I'm kind of bummed. I really had to reach for that description.

T - Like it smells, but not so bland. It's a little spicy too, which I didn't pick up on by the smell. Not wild about the aftertaste.

M - I don't usually complain about this, but it's just a little too carbonated. Medium body, finish isn't too bad.

D/O - It was fun to try, but I won't be having it again. It's FINE...which is not good enough for what I am looking for in a dubbel. It's a good try, but there are dubbels that are much better out there. I'd say the Belgians do it better, but one of my favorite dubbels is also an American dubbel, so I guess the Americans do it better too.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.13/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sierra Ovila on tap at The Blind Tiger, NYC, served in a 12-oz snifter and pricey at $8 ($7 during happy hour).

Appearance: A whitish head dies almost right away, leaving a rim and an island, like an atoll in the South Pacific where the French throw nukes while accusing us Americans of being nuclear. Color is a mysterious copper, sort of barleywine style.

Smell: Some honey, cloves, spice. Yeast and glue. Smashed prune, raisin extract. A faint, underwhelming nose. Mellow sweetness. Picture the Heartland on a sunny, glorious day. Scattered bees pollinating bright-yellow flowers. Artificially flavored bubblegum.

Taste: Follows nose, with a sticky sweetness, brulee sugars and artisanal honey. Watery, thin finish that hurts the overall. A tad of dry hops at the end of the sip. Soda, sparkling water.

Mouthfeel: Again, thin and watery. Incomplete. Low carbonation and body, medium flavor. Spicy prickly finish.

Overall: Drinkable for sure, but SO boring! Ovila on a bottle was a very good beer. On tap, a disappointment.

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Photo of MikeB20
3.13/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

P: 750ml corked bottle into a tulip glass.

A: A medium to dark brown with a thick bubbly tan head that dissapates rather quickly leaving almost no lace. Nice color but with the lacking head and no lacing it's not that impressive. Belgians typically look great in the glass, this one doesn't.

S: A malty sweetness with caramel and some fruit. There's a fairly distinct smell of alcohol but it's not heavy. Maybe a little honey as it warms. No hop aroma.

T: Some caramel with a peppery finish. I think a little alcohol sneaks in at the end. Bitterness is low to moderate, enough to help balance the sweetness. Not really as much flavor as I had expected.

M: Mouthfeel is moderate. It drinks smooth with lots of tiny bubbles of carbonation.

O: I'm not really loving this one. It's good but it's not great in terms of the style. It has it's roots in a true Belgian Dubbel but falls short of delivering the full experience. I have a feeling this beer could age really, really well. This beer has spirit like qualities to it and I'd be interested to see how they turn out in a year or two. I might look for another bottle to cellar.

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Photo of TheSupremeAJ
3.11/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears dark and brown. Foam dies quickly and leaves a thin white ring. The aroma is boozey and medocre. Taste is pleasant, although could be a bit sweeter. Very bready with a little dark fruit. I like my stuff dry, but this is too dry and thin. The yeast character and funkiness of a Belgian dubbell just don't seem present.

Tis a palatable beer, but Sierra Nevada I expected a little more body and yeast to be frank. For what I paid I shouldv'e bought a Belgian... from Belgium and not Chico.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.11/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Hazy, deep caramel bordering on a brown/mahogany. Not any real depth to the color. head is off-white/tan. Bubbly with some mild lacing that drops down pretty quickly. Head lingers for a good bit.

Smell: banana, clove, pepper, dark fruit, candi sugar, and caramel malts. it hits all the right aromas for the style. Strong Belgian yeast character. There's a lot on the nose, but it lacks depth and nuance. The aromas are present, but fade quickly. A slight hint of booze in the back as well.

Taste: Upfront explosion of clove, banana, spice (pepper), and dark fruit (fig), coupled with sweet caramel malt and pure candi sugar. Lacks any definition in the middle of each sip. It's all upfront flavor and then a dry sweetness at the end, but that's it. As it warms, some more booze, caramel malts, and candi sugar come out, but don't add any more depth. Sweetness take a big step up the longer it sits. Heat and Belgian yeast linger.

Mouthfeel: Nice and smooth to start. Touch dry overall. A little thin overall.

Overall: Decent, but not of the caliber I expect from Sierra Nevada. It's a respectable take on the style, but lacks a middle.

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Photo of zhanson88
3.11/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours out a clear, very dark ruby color with brownish tinges around the edges. About 2 fingers of light tan head form that has excellent retention, but just average lacing.

Smell: Dark fruits, yeast, light esters, clove, wet cardboard. All pretty light, fairly difficult to pick out. I was expecting a more robust scent, for sure.

Taste: Akin to the smell. Yeast, dark fruits, clove, light esters. It's certainly not a bad beer at all, but just a bit light in the flavor department all the way around.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Between light and medium bodied, quite a bit of carbonation, fairly smooth feel. Overall not too bad, but not as good as I had expected. It hurts that dubbels are, let's face it, not the most exciting style. Still, a decently well crafted beer.

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Photo of atigerlife
3.1/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Nice looking 750ml that made a large pop when opening.

Pours a light reddish brown. Lighter in color than I was expecting. Small off-white head that dissipates rather quickly.

Aroma is sweet with caramel and apricots.

Taste is malt, caramel, nuts, pepper and some hints of something medicinal.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and cleansing.

Overall, it is drinkable. Goes down easy for the ABV. But, for the style I think it falls far short.

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Photo of dcook11
3.1/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter. Ice tea colored with just a touch of lacing, but not much. A pencil thin head graces the top of the glass. The nose is fairly harsh....alcohol way too noticable for the abv. Caramel malt follows with a touch of hops at the finish. The taste is harsh as well with the alcohol being far too apparent for the abv. Not really a fan of this one, probably wont have it again.

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Photo of Phelps
3.06/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Enjoyed from the tap at Tops, inside a tall, thin 10-ounce glass.

The result of collaboration between Sierra Nevada and the Abbey of New Clairvaux, Ovila Dubbel pours a deep apple cider color -- a mix of ruby and amber. Beautiful clarity. A creamy, half-finger head of light tan quickly becomes a thin ring. No lace.

Fruity nose, from what I pick up, which isn't much at all. Some dark fruits, a touch of sweet banana. Too light.

Interesting flavor. Bananas and pears are the leaders, while raisins, strawberries and a bit of brown sugar are also noticeable before a slightly drying finish. Slight lactic tang. It's a nice, crisp flavor, but again, it's a bit light.

Medium-high carbonation pokes the tongue and fizzes up the beer as it moves. Medium, velvety body with good weight to it. Lighter finish than body implies.

Overall, a nice attempt at a Trappist ale by Sierra Nevada and their newfound monk buddies, but it falls short, lacking the depth and complexity of true abbey dubbels.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.06/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Really looking forward to trying this after hearing about it for months now...

A beautiful mahagony pour into my Chimay goblet... Terrific appearance...

Sweet malts along with a touch of banana and a heavy dose of yeast on the nose... I was expecting a little more in this dept. Smells ok I guess but its just not loud enough for me... Slightly spicy...

Fairly watery non-descript sweet malts with hints of banana and clove but again nothing to write home about really... This felt a bit lacking when compared to other Abbey ales... Not unpleasant at all but nothing sets this apart either...

One will probably be enough with this brew... Nothing screams at me to revisit it

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.02/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Pours a dark ruby amber. Head is light tan and 2 fingers thick. Retention for days. Resulting lace is thick as hell and sticks to the sides with ease.

Smell - Some sugary character.... really hard to distinguish any kind of discernible aroma.

Taste - Starts slightly sour, there's a bit of light fig. Really, there's not much here to comment on. Finishes slightly sour.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body. Decent carbonation leads to a bit of liveliness.

Overall - Meh. I usually chide dubbels for their thick, rich and sugary character, and because this beer lacks that, it would stand to reason that I might like this beer... but I don't. there's just nothing interesting going on with this beer. It's almost bland. I've gotten more flavor out of pale ales.

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Photo of bsp77
3.01/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Dark orange-red (almost a pinkish head) with a very thick, light tan head.

Smell: Plum, raisins, molasses, clove and spicy hops. Slightly metallic. Boozy.

Taste: Somewhat sweet and syrupy caramel, dark fruitiness (plum & raisins), with just the lightest spicy touch at the end. Taste just seems muted overall.

Feel: Despite some syrupiness, this is way too watery. Moderately high carbonation. Much more warming than 7.5% abv would indicate. Finish is not dry at all. Wow, the mouthfeel really misses the mark.

Overall: Between the light flavor and the horrible mouthfeel (for a Belgian at least), this completely let me down. I am a huge Sierra Nevada fan and a pretty big Trappist fan as well (even if this is not quite Trappist), but this does not at all live up to what either SN or the Monks are capable of.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
2.98/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750 mL bottle poured into a goblet.

Appearance - Deep amber body with some sediment floating around in it topped by a cream colored head. Great retention and a nice pillow of foam on top of the beer.

Smell - When it's cold, it smells of nothing. When it's warm, I swear I smell bourbon. Also, some bready malts and a hint of caramel. Really have to suck it in to get the aromas, though.

Taste - Again, a hint of the bourbon, with a bready sweetness right with it. After that, it falls off to an odd, but light, bitterness. Not a lot of flavor going on and the finish is a bit off-putting.

Mouthfeel - Highly carbonated with a dry finish. It's actually a bit abrasive in the finish as a result. Medium bodied, but it's gone quickly due to the dryness.

Overall - Not something I'd drink again. Takes a lot to get any flavor out of it, and when you do it isn't great. Not a good take on a Dubbel.

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Photo of BobCS
2.9/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Hazy and brown with some red highlights under a tight beige foam. The haze appears to be chill haze and definitely temperature related.

S: Earthy, fruity, yeasty, with a distinctive Belgian abbey character. Although the aroma profile is spot on, the intensity is less than many other classic Abbey ales. Aroma and overal character definitely improves as this beer warms up in the glass.

T: Medium-sweet with dark fruit and banana, some tartness, and restrained spicing in the background. As with the aroma the overall character of the flavor is dead on for a Belgian abbey, but the overall impact is somewhat lacking.

M: Medium-full and well carbonated

D: This beer nicely fits the characteristics appropriate for Abbey beers, but is lacking in intensity (as compared with other classic examples). Do let this beer warm a bit as both the aroma and flavor will improve greatly. It is drinkable and enjoyable, but there may be little reason to return to it given some of the other excellent choices from Belgium and North America in this category.

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Photo of dcloeren
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a deep amber with subtle ruby hues on the edges with 2 fingers of foamy cream colored head that disappeared pretty quickly

Getting some plums and other dark fleshy fruits with some raisins perhaps...? Very subtle caramel back ground The aromas on this beer are very subtle and pretty disappointing

As far as taste goes this beer is average at best... Getting the same dark fruits as I got in the nose with an even more subtle caramel background. Getting some spice and a very small amount of heat from the alcohol. Once this beer warmed up it tasted like nothing but dark fruit syrup. Shits weak son

The mouthfeel was the only above average thing about this beer. It was syrupy with a great amount of carbonation that prickled the tongue with each sip. Dark fruit aftertaste that lingers

Overall, I don't plan to ever buy this beer again. It was decent but it was nothing special

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Photo of heygeebee
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a brown mahogany. The two finger head dies to a film.

Aromas are of brown sugar, Belgian yeast.

Taste is sweet and in the same vein. A bit one dimensional. Hint of vanilla/butterscotch.

Mouthfeel is moderately carbonated and medium weight. But too sickly sweet.

All in all, in danger of blanding out here. No real redeeming features and the sweetness just plain gets in the way.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - even a careful pour creates a medium tan head thats three quarters of the glass at first, it tames after a minute or two enough to fill the glass properly. The beer is a dark brazil nut brown with crimson highlights and plenty of carbonation

S - malty for sure, some currant aromas peek through a yeasty aroma base

T - maltier than the aroma let on, the dark sweetness alluded to on the bottle is present, the candied sugar and dark fruits, especially currants or plums. The spicy, peppery notes are subdued if there at all

M&D - malty and malty, and sweet and sweet. not a very complex brew. Having the words Sierra Nevada on the bottle got my hopes up a bit and this didn't meet that. It's smooth and easy to drink, just expected a bit more. The "mild hop bitterness" characteristic of this style wasn't there to serve as a balancing factor.

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Photo of bierguru
2.74/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - its a muddy brown with mild carbonation and a thin tan head laces well

S - the nose of the beer is very weak. Mostly covered by brown sugar followed by mild yeast and spice.

T - right up front you get smacked from brown sugar followed by spice that flows through the rest of the taste.Taste ends with some fuitiness.

M - mild carbontation which is good however the beer leaves a mild-heavy flemminess in the mouth very unpleasant

O - the beer is okay not worth a seond try but worth a first somewhat

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Photo of alaimoa
2.74/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Pours deep brown with reddish tones. Smell has a boozy caramel. Taste of sugary alcohol, caramel, sticky, sweet limited complexity. Mouthfeel is sticky sweet and just ok.
Overall nothing that special about this beer. Very sticky and caremel sweetness overwhelms

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Photo of broken22
2.63/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

So I was looking for new Brews at my store when I this beer. The label caught my eye. Its nice and simple with subtle details. I like the label design a lot. So when I saw this was a Sierra Nevada brew I was surprised. Once I read the label about how buying this beer would make me a good Samaritan, okay not really, but it does say that proceeds go to help rebuild The Abbey Of New Clairvaux. So naturally I wanted to help and I bought this beer :P

Lets get on with the review.

I have had this now on tap and in a glass so thats why I put on-tap. This beer comes out with lots of carbonation. I had to wait a while until it stopped effervescing. Once its done your left with a nice glassy lake like surface without any head to speak of. I was kind of worried that it was over-carbonated. The color of this beer is a nice medium brown with a hint of red. The beer smells kind of yeasty and bread like. The flavor is much the same. I'm not getting much fruit or any other flavors you would come to expect from this style of beer. The finish does have an ever so slight bitterness to it. However its so very slight and subtle as in barely there. There isn't much carbonation to this beer. So overall mouth feel is rater bland.

This beer is okay. I was expecting something with a little more flavor than what this has. I hate to end up ranking this as one of the lowest scoring beers since I started writing these but I have to be true. I still encourage you to pick one up and try. If you don't like it either just say to yourself that is was for a good cause.

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Photo of Philousa
2.63/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Imbibed on tap at The Rose & Crown 5/25/2012.

Opaque chestnut, rust color with a ring of delicate bubble around the rim. Nothing covers the bald top. Good amount of Belgian dark malt. Nutty and a little bit of metallic penny aroma. Solid, but not complex. Very nutty and creamy flavor. Some candied sugar is evident but not annoying. No bitterness from hops, but malt bitterness lingers nicely/smoothly. A bit watery, this beer finishes dry.

Not very complex, but much more smooth than other Dubbels I've tried. Many times there will be an annoying flavor accompanied with an itching in the back of my throat when having a dark Belgian, but none of that with this beer (I think they toned down the candied sugar). Solid, but I'm not intrigued enough to try this one again.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
2.57/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

oor VCU, ran outta fire...Gotta still love Butler, though!!!

The basics: $8.99/750ml bottle and nobody knows the ABV apparently...

I'm loving the direction Sierra Nevada has been going: still trying to push the envelope even though they long ago ceased being a "craft brewer", per se. Gotta flip over the High on Fire record so I'm gonna blaze through this (pun fully intended)...

Gorgeous beer. Nice reddish, orange-ish amber. Creamy, big fluffy head. Nice carbonation...

Aromas are faint, which is a bummer given how nice it looks. I get some orange extract, maybe some sour apple. It's very muted...bummer.

Flavor is weird. Not sure what's going on with it. Carbonation gives an excellent mouthfeel to it upfront, but it gets painfully thin in the middle...There isn't a lot going on here, to be damn honest...It's suprising how little flavor is captured in this. It's malty to be sure, and I like the texture, but overall I guess I expected more "oomph" to it...There's little to no heft in the flavor profile, which parallels the aroma profile in as much as it, too, lacked any kind of heft. Surprisingly poor beer, I'm afraid to say, but maybe others will love it's "sophistication" (that seems to be a buzz word among the beer bourgoisie for beer that lacks any robustness of any kind...us layman aren't good enough to understand the subtleness, right? Piss off, wankers)...

What I like most: The beautiful appearance

What I like least: The unbelieveably "subtle" aspects of teh rest of it...

Verdict: SN makes so many other great beers, you'd be remiss plunking your hard earned ducats down on a bottle of this...avoid.

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Photo of ZenAgnostic
2.54/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Surprisingly light brown body but very hazy, dark, and opaque. Then again I was poured the bottom of the bottle so it's probably just sediment lightening it up.

Smell - Light banana. A bit floral. Not much spend for a dubbel.

Taste - Clear and light bodied. The Bud Light of dubbels.

Mouthfeel - Clean body with alcohol finish. Dry aftertaste.

Overall Drinkability - Pretty boring.

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Photo of claspada
2.53/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Aromas of grainy/ bready malts, with very very very light fruitiness (plum and raisin), some earthy/mineral aromas. Really not that pleasant or exciting or inviting.
The taste follows the nose with brown sugar and dominant bready maltiness. Really can't taste much as far as dark fruits, If you stretch you can barely get plum or date but you have to stretch and focus on it to find it.
Mouthfeel is borderline watery with below average carbonation for the style, despite the huge pop I got when I opened this.
Overall this is one of the worst Dubbels I have ever had. I have made and had numerous homebrewed Belgian browns/dubbels which exponentially more aroma and flavor. The pleasant spicy yeast flavors are completely masked by waves and waves or bready and grainy malts. It's almost like they stripped the flavors by using some German/Belgian hybrid lager yeast. Don't waste your $8 on this flavorless "Belgian Dubbel;" also for the record I didn't even drink the second half of the bottle because, why drink average beer.

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Ovila Abbey Dubbel from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
3.8 out of 5 based on 1,035 ratings.
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